A PROUD dad has praised his cycling sons after they tackled one of the highest peaks in England.
Anthony Burrell, 37, said he was “bursting with pride” after his sons Harry, 10,and Joe, 9, rode the four-mile climb of Hartside Pass in 90 minutes - and that was just one of 23 climbs they completed on day three of their coast to coast challenge.
To top it all, they did it in another day of howling winds to raise money for Blackhall youngster Bradley Lowery. The dad and boys from Wingate are riding from Roker Pier to Whitehaven. So far, they have raised more than £700.
Anthony, who works as an engineer at Caterpillar in Peterlee, said: “I woke up at around 6am yesterday. The rain and wind were horrendous. I was thinking about us having a day off, knowing what was coming.”
But the boys were determined to complete the climb from Killhope to Alston and beyond.
Anthony said: “A lot of people who do the coast to coast ride to Alston go around it. The boys were presented with the facts and given the choice. They love a challenge.
“We have been working on slipstreaming all week, where the kids tuck in, Harry almost touching my wheel and Joe almost touching Harry’s. I explained to the kids that with the way the wind was, if we could do it well, what is an epic climb into the wind would be much easier. We did it, we made it to Hartside and the kids knew that the hardest parts of the coast to coast were behind us.”
After completing the ride, Anthony said: “The kids are flat out. I knew my boys were cabable of this, yet I’m bursting with pride at not only what they’ve achieved so far, but how they’ve gone about it”.
He thanked everyone who has supported the boys’ fundraising and said: “We never imagined it would go this high.”
Bradley, aged three, who lives with his parents Gemma, 31, an NHS health trainer, and builder Carl, 30, in Blackhall, was born with rare childhood cancer neuroblastoma.
A huge fundraising drive is underway to raise £500,000. The target has been set for Bradley to have treatment overseas, should he suffer a relapse. To support the biking brothers, visit www.virginmoneygiving.com/team/HarryandJoeBurrell